ARC event was a chance for IDD citizens to catch up with old friends

Published 7:00 am Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Last week the ARC of Pearl River County held a craft day for the community’s intellectually disabled citizens.

The event was held at Sun Roamer’s RV Park, which provided a place for them to make bird feeders. After craft time, the participants were treated to games and pizza.

Suzette Morrow, president of the ARC of Pearl River County, said her organization holds a number of events through the year for the citizens. She said it’s a way for them to get together with other citizens with disabilities and catch up. Since the dissolution of Picayune Industries, where many of them gathered to work, the citizens had to seek separate service providers to meet their daily needs.

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But at the spring and fall events held by the ARC, they get a chance to see what each other is up to again, Morrow said

Other events held by the ARC for the citizens include a day of bingo at the Knights of Columbus Hall in April. Morrow said members of the Knights of Columbus cook food for the participants during that event.

The ARC also holds three dances for the citizens. One is held during Mardi Gras, another is held during the fall and there is also a Luau themed dance held during the year.

Next month, Morrow said an intellectual disability awareness day will be held at Friendship Park in Picayune. During that event, the participants will see presentations from local emergency responders, including a K-9 demonstration.

During last week’s event, they were put to the task of taking colorful rings of cereal and stringing them together to create bird feeders.

“I try to get them to use their imagination,” Morrow said.

Also, the event featured prizes for the participants to vie for through a variety of competitive activities.

The entire event was free to the participants, Morrow said.

Morrow’s ultimate goal is to inform the public about services available to people with intellectual disabilities. If the parents are unaware of the services, then those citizens could end up sitting at home alone, missing out on all the fun.